It is the dream of everyone to find a dream home or apartment, but every good things comes with its own challenges. Finding an apartment in Nigeria has become a challenging task, due to several factors that will be discussed below. Looking for a good apartment, without running into trouble in Nigeria has to be done strategically, due to several factors that tenants have encountered over the years while looking for an apartment. Some of these unforeseen problems could have been avoided if proper research has been carried out during the course of the search. Here i will be taking you through various signs to watch out for when searching for a house in Lagos and Nigeria as a whole.

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20 Things To Consider Before Renting An Apartment in Nigeria

  1. Unpaid PHCN Utility Bills : This has become a major challenge for new home owners who might have inherited huge PHCN bills from the ex tenants of the house, who has refused to pay up electricity bills , and sometimes, these bills accumulate to the tune of hundreds of thousand. Therefore before you go on pay for an apartment always ask for the recent PHCN Utility Bills of the apartment.
  2. Patronise Trusted Agents : Always patronise trusted Agents with many years of good track record.
  3. Avoid Lousy Landlord: Note just as you have a boss at work, at home, your landlord is also like your boss, because he monitors and manages every activities and persons living in the house. So it is always a good practice to indirectly interview your landlord to be before making any commitment. Sometimes a little research around the area will help you out.
  4. Erosion : This is something no one is going to tell you. You will have to carry out further investigations to really know if the house or the area is prone to erosion. The easiest way to know is to visit the apartment during rainy season, another way is to look out for water marks on the wall as a result of erosion, But some landlords have been known to repaint the houses after rainy season to cover the spots created by erosion. So it is always a good practice to investigate properly before going on with such transaction.
  5. Fraudulent Landlords / caretakers: This is one of the biggest nightmare of house hunters, some Landlords and Caretakers are known to defraud their prospective and unsuspecting clients by illegally collecting money from them and several other tenants without letting out the apartment to them. Always get your lawyer and Government security agencies involved before proceeding with such transactions.
  6. Illegal Service Charge: It should be a good practice to always ask from the beginning the total amount of service charges and other charges you will be paying monthly or yearly if applicable. Some house owners are known to defraud their tenants by introducing some illegal payments or charges after you must have moved into the apartment. Asking from the beginning will save you a lot of headache.
  7. Soak away Smell: Make sure your apartment is not located close to the soak away. Some soak away are not well built and are known to collapse and also introduce some foul smell into the environment and if your apartments happens to be located just in front or behind the soak away, you might have issues with the ugly smell emanating from the latrine.
  8. Agreement : Read and understand the terms and agreement drafted by the landlord before going ahead to sign it, You might want to get your lawyer involved before signing any form of agreement, If you don’t feel comfortable with anything stated in the agreement you can always call the attention of the landlord to it,
  9. Know the History of the house: Do a little research about the house you are planning to move into. Note this is where you will be spending a lot of your time, you will need to ensure the house is safe, well protected and secure, some houses are prone to armed robbery attacks, epidemics , diseases etc
  10. Cost : One of the biggest factors to consider is the cost of the house compared to your budget. It is always advisable not to get an apartment that is  not too expensive and not more than your 3 months salary, maximum of 4 months salary. That is , if you earn one hundred thousand naira in a month that is 1,200,000 in a year. Your rent shouldn’t should be between 300,000 and 400,000 per annum.
  11. Good Road: Another major difficulty is good roads in and out of the facility .
  12. Easy Accessibility: Look for areas with that is easily accessible and within close proximity to other major areas. Always look for areas that can be easily accessed.
  13. Ventilation: Avoid apartments with bad ventilation and poor lighting. Some areas are not well structured and this often leads to bad ventilation or poor lighting within the apartments
  14. Avoid Area prone to Violence: Some areas are known to have high number of
  15. Avoid apartments close to religious centres: Religiously centers are supposed to be place of worship but over time, some religious centres have been known to cause noise pollution, traffic gridlock within the areas that they are situated.
  16. Avoid Industrial Areas which could induce noise and other health related risk or hazards
  17. Avoid markets places : Market places are usually noise centres and living close to market places has it’s own challenges
  18. Don’t Stay too Close to family members: Even though this might sound controversial, sometimes you need privacy and you wouldn’t want your siblings or family members running to your house without informing you.
  19. Avoid Damaged apartments: Avoid houses with too many damages that will incur more cost to you.
  20. Get a standard house: Go for high quality houses that can withstand rust, wind and any form of natural disaster

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